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Force Field Diagram: Examples

The Quality Toolbook > Force Field Diagram > Examples

When to use it | How to understand it | Example | How to use it | Practical variations


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One of the options for a steel works planning team looking to save future processing costs is whether to consolidate the strip mill to a single site. To help identify the forces involved, they build a Force-Field Diagram, as in the illustration.

During completion of the diagram, it was found that the most significant force was not the opposition from unions, as was expected, but the political pressure. In a time of recession and shortly before elections, the government was applying significant pressure not to close plants in areas of high unemployment. This, coupled with other consolidation costs, gave sufficient reason for this initially attractive solution to be abandoned.



Fig. 1. Example Force Field Diagram


Other examples

  • A supervisor disagrees with her manager's plans for their department, and uses a Force-Field Diagram to identify how the planned actions will be almost impossible to implement. In doing this she finds alternative actions which will achieve most of the original objectives, but in a far more efficient manner. When presented with this evidence, the manager readily agrees to the changes.
  • A town planning team is investigating the feasibility of employing independent street cleaning crews. They use evidence from other towns to build arguments for and against the proposal, displaying these in a Force-Field Diagram.
  • An assembly team in a domestic appliance manufacturer is working on reducing the number of washing machines which leak in final test. They test the idea of using silicon-bonded seals, using a Force-Field Diagram. No significant restraining forces are found, so they continue with implementing the solution.



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